Leading people can be both rewarding and difficult at the same time. It takes resolve, discipline and most important prayer. People in leadership–specifically spiritual leadership–are more accountable to God, more subject to temptation, more targets of spiritual warfare, more visible to the public eye, and have more exposure to their marriage and children.
Paul writes in 1 Timothy 2:1-4 (NLT), “I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity. This is good and pleases God our Savior, who wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth.”
Because of the demands made by the senior pastor and leadership, they require more love, more grace, more fruit of the Holy Spirit, more wisdom and creativity, more courage, more endurance, and more prayer. It is important that we obey the Bible and pray as Paul instructs us for those who are in authority; interceding being specific and intentional when we pray. This is one of the best ways for you to serve your senior pastor and leadership. It will bring you closer to them and the heart of the church. Here are 8 ways that you can pray for your senior pastor and leadership:
1. Pray against the temptation to become an administrator of things as more important that serving people out of love and calling.
The church is required to have the administration as it conducts daily business. With the weight of these duties, the focus can shift from people to conducting business very fast neglecting the reason the church exists. Pray that the senior pastor and leadership finds a balance to get business done while maintaining focus on serving people out of love and calling. People must remain the focus.
2. Pray against the temptation to become mechanical and robotic.
Routine and habit easily form the longer you do something. Pastors are not exempt from this. It can be easy to fall into a routine and begin ministering out of professionalism. This creates a mechanical and robotic response to people’s needs based on experiences, not the word of God. We want to pray that the senior pastor and leadership remain fresh and minister while professional, from a fresh perspective and revelation from God.
3. Pray against the temptation to seek material security as the basis for joy and happiness.
Senior pastors and leaders live in the same world as you do. They have the same needs. It is important for spiritual leaders to maintain the source of joy and happiness which does not come through material security. Our culture is demanding in this area creating a world view based on consumerism. Pray, they don’t fall prey to this lie of our culture seeking joy and happiness from the wrong source.
4. Pray against the temptation to become hardened and distrustful towards people because of disappointments and disillusionment.
When you work with people, you learn that disappointment and disillusionment are occurrences that happen too often. As humans, it is easy to become guarded and distrustful. The hurt and pain are real. Senior pastors and leadership must remain open to trusting people. Trust is still a foundational pillar to serving people.
5. Pray against the temptation of finding satisfaction in the failure of another leader.
This is usually motivated by an ungodly jealousy. Jealousy amplifies our human nature. Leaders must stop comparing themselves and their churches to others. This only compounds the problem. Response to failure should be reconciliation and encouragement, not satisfaction. Failure in other leaders hurts the church, not help it. Nothing can be gained from another’s failures.
6. Pray against the temptation to measure ministry success by the numbers, building, and budgets.
The true measure of success for any church is the spiritual quality and maturity of the people. Comparison in any fashion kills. I am not against using metrics, they are necessary and helps us track where we are based on where we have been and where we want to go. However, they are tools and not the focus. Pray that spiritual growth always takes priority over growing a crowd.
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7. Pray against the temptation of compromise.
Compromise is easy when we excuse little sins, habits, and shortcomings justifying them because of stress and sacrificial lifestyle. Senior pastors and leaders are called to live a lifestyle that is uncompromising.
8. Pray against the temptation to use people for personal gain, ministry status, or goal accomplishment.
Motives are important and ministry must be done with right motives or people get deeply hurt. Senior leaders get the privilege of co-building with Christ His church. The motivation for service should be to see people saved, spiritually mature, and fulfilling the destiny and calling on their life. Money can skew service and prayer helps to maintain focus, clarity, and motive.